Three Chin State civilians killed by military artillery fire

An artillery shell fired by troops from Infantry Battalion (IB) 274 on Thursday morning in southern Chin State’s Mindat Township exploded near the village of Muitui, killing three residents, according to the local anti-junta administrative team. 

One 70-year-old man and two women, aged 60 and 30, died in the blast, which occurred 10 miles north of the township’s administrative centre. 

The identities of the victims were not immediately available at the time of reporting. 

According to a statement released by the Mindat People’s Administration Team, another man was injured and four houses were destroyed.

A resident of the town told Myanmar Now that he heard a total of six explosions on Thursday.

“Even though they happened miles away, they were so loud that the ground was shaking,” he said of the blasts.

The Chinland Defence Force (CDF) chapter in Mindat announced that five junta soldiers had been killed and several more injured during an attack on military bases in the township on Monday.

In the resistance group’s statement, they said that a junta artillery unit in Kyaukhtu, located across the state border in Magway Region’s Saw Township, as well as the Mindat-based IB 274, fired nine shells back at the CDF during the attacks. 

Two of the shells reportedly hit the village of Baung Hte, some two miles north of Mindat town. No one was injured. 

Locals said that increased military presence particularly at the entrances and exits to Mindat town has limited their movement in the area. 

“Nobody really dares to go out of their homes anymore,” the Mindat resident said.

In May, another junta artillery shell hit the village of Madat, 100 miles south of Mindat, severely injuring an 11-year-old child and a 40-year-old woman, according to local sources.

Beyond the town, rural Mindat remains a resistance stronghold. Members of the township’s anti-coup movement were among the first in the country to take up arms against regime forces cracking down on protesters at the time, with the CDF forming in April last year. 

The following month, the junta imposed martial law on Mindat, with an estimated 90 percent of the town’s 11,000 residents fleeing and seeking shelter in the forest or in neighbouring villages, according to the local People’s Administration Team.

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